Should You Keep Coffee Beans in the Freezer?

Should You Keep Coffee Beans in the Freezer?

At Terminal 3 Coffee Roasters, we often receive questions about the best way to store coffee beans. One common query is whether keeping coffee beans in the freezer is a good idea.

In this latest release of our Gateway series, we will explain the pros and cons of this storage method and the best practices you can do to preserve the quality of your coffee beans.

Pros of Freezing Coffee Beans

Freezing coffee beans can significantly slow down the staling process. By reducing the rate at which the beans' volatile compounds evaporate, freezing helps maintain their flavour and aroma over a longer period.

Moreover, freezing can be a practical solution if you’ve purchased a large quantity of coffee and cannot consume it all within a few weeks. It allows you to preserve the beans’ quality until you’re ready to use them. However, sometimes coffee that has been frozen for a long time may produce a flat and bland brew.

Cons of Freezing Coffee Beans

It is important to note that freezing coffee beans can have several consequences too. Coffee beans tend to absorb moisture from their environment. The process of freezing and thawing can introduce condensation, leading to moisture exposure. This can degrade the beans' quality and alter their flavour profile.

Additionally, coffee beans can absorb odours from the freezer. If not stored properly in an airtight container, they may take unwanted flavours from other items in the freezer, such as food odours. 

Best Practices for Freezing Coffee Beans

Freezing coffee beans may still have positive outcomes when done correctly. If you decide to freeze your coffee beans, you can follow these best practices to minimize the potential downsides:

  • Store your coffee beans in airtight containers to prevent moisture and odour absorption. Vacuum sealed bags are highly recommended for this purpose.
  • Divide your coffee beans into smaller portions before freezing. This way, you can thaw only the amount you need, reducing the number of times beans are exposed to air and moisture.
  • Allow the beans to reach room temperature while still sealed in their container before opening. This helps prevent condensation from forming on the beans.

However, freezing beans is not necessary if you follow proper storage techniques. Simply store your coffee beans in an airtight container in a cool, dark place, away from direct sunlight and heat sources. We also recommend purchasing coffee beans in smaller quantities that you can consume within two weeks to one month to ensure maximum freshness of your beans.